This is your Friday update, which takes a quick look at the week ahead and some developments that El Paso Matters is following.
School Board Runoff is Saturday: Election day for several school district board seats and the Horizon City mayor is Saturday. The polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. There are two El Paso Independent School District trustee races on the ballot, plus one Ysleta Independent School District board race. During the early voting period, which ended Tuesday, only 2,801 people voted. One of the EPISD races features Alex Cuellar, an assistant El Paso County attorney, and Will Veliz, a Realtor. They are running to represent District 2, the Burges-Jefferson feeder pattern. School teacher Jacqueline Martinez and stay-at-home mom Valerie Ganelon Beals are vying for the District 6 seat on the EPISD board to represent the Franklin High School area. In the Ysleta High School area race, former educator Deborah “Debbie” Torres and political consultant Chris Hernandez are running to represent District 6 on the YISD board. The Horizon City mayoral race has two candidates, Johnny “Doc” Duran and Andres “Andy” Renteria. Visit our Voter Guide here.
Learn where to vote in El Paso, view a sample ballot, find your district, and see where candidates stand on key issues.
Montana Vista Wastewater: El Paso Water will install wastewater infrastructure for nearly 800 households in the Montana Vista community in east El Paso County, where residents for decades have had to rely on their own septic systems. The city-owned water utility is conducting the project – which is funded with $29 million from the Texas Water Development Board – after some septic systems in Montana Vista overflowed. They became a health hazard because they were not constructed correctly or were poorly maintained, El Paso Water said. Septic systems, which typically slowly discharge waste into the nearby soil, can risk contaminating groundwater and pose other health risks when they malfunction, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. The Montana Vista project, which will involve digging deep trenches, is set to begin next summer and is expected to be completed by late 2025.
National HIV Testing Day: As part of the National HIV Testing Day, the city of El Paso is offering free HIV tests on June 27. The city’s Department of Public Health will offer the free tests from 8 to 11:30 a.m. and from 1 to 4:30 p.m. at 220 S. Stanton St. and 5115 El Paso Drive, Suite B. In El Paso County, 2,455 residents live with HIV, 109 of whom were newly diagnosed in 2021. To schedule an appointment or for more information on the HIV Prevention program, call (915) 212-6665 or visit EPHealth.com under the HIV Prevention Tab.
Area Principals Headed to Harvard: Edgar Rincon, the principal of Fabens High School, April Marioni, the principal of San Elizario High School, and Myrna Lopez-Patti, the principal of Tornillo Elementary School, are among the 50 educators from 35 school districts across Texas selected to attend a leadership conference at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. They will be a part of the training offered by the Charles Butt Foundation, a nonprofit working to improve the quality of education for students in Texas’ rural communities.